Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Your Typical Day As A Writer

Your typical day as a writer...

Sara's just done a post detailing her usual daytime routine. Now here's mine.
(Read on, three bits of really exciting news will follow!)

6 am - alarm goes off. I don't leap out of bed. Cat lands on belly and purrs. Other cat sits on the floor and stares up at me.

6.10 - get up, write for an hour (this is a NaNo- or Drafting-Stage-only routine. Otherwise, sleep wins out).

7.10 - shower, dress, head out the door. Read for beta reviews or book reviews on commute, run errands before work.

8.30 - 4.30 - work. Work work work work work.
At lunch:
run errands,
lunch with friends or family (especially if I'm starving from having skipped breakfast),
write,
edit,
work on Alfred Russel Wallace transcripts,
work on translations if I've received any
OR (not 'and'. You didn't think I was going to write 'and', did you?)
clear emails (saving blog comments and emails that require longer than one line for later).
Sometimes I drop everything and make lists just to clear my head. Wrote up a revised Christmas gift list today.

4.30 - 6 pm - read on afternoon commute. Get groceries, do dishes, make dinner and eat it, read the paper and maybe flip through a magazine. Do other chores if I'm out of clean clothes or people are coming over (read: speed clean the bathroom).

6 - 10 pm. here's where things get tricky. Ideally, I type up my words from the morning (I'm more inclined to do this during NaNo, otherwise I save it all for the weekend). It takes me about an hour to type 1000 words because they invariably need editing.
Other times I do blog-related stuff. There're exercises on the Forum to attend to. Pub Trivia Night on Mondays! Knitting to catch up on, friends to visit with...
And if Diana Gabaldon has a new book out, this entire schedule goes out the window: I read. (That's where the girl in the Martini glass comes in. Kidding! I'd rather have a single malt...)

Speaking of which, ooh boy! Now it can be told: a number of us November Birthday Girls got together on the Forum for a colossal Big (not beg, big: Bigging 101 rules), including Karen Henry of Outlandish Observations. And Diana Gabaldon gifted us with not one but two excerpts, one from The Scottish Prisoner and one from the next Outlander book, Written in My Own Heart's Blood.


Also, our Campaigner Challenges eBook is here! The wonderful Cat has put together an ebook of 176 stories from 81 participants in Rach's Campaign Challenge, including mine. All proceeds go to Help Harry Help Others to fund research on brain cancer.


Available now on Smashwords and Amazon.

***
***

How's everyone doing with their goals for A Round of Words in 80 Days? I've been writing consistently for Ayten's story, and collecting reviews from beta readers for Out of the Water, but it looks like December is going to be editing month for the latter. I'm excited because now I can see all sorts of places in the novel where I can cut words - scenes I was too close to before and didn't want to chop off. But I'm at 110,000 words, so I've got lots of room to play. And here I thought I'd be querying already... Still, better to polish as much as I can.

Hope everyone's having a good week!

19 comments:

Joshua said...

I wish I could take public transport and be able to read or write on my way to and from work. Retrieving children from school makes that a bit tricky.

Trisha said...

oh oh oh OH I love Gabaldon!!! But I must confess I haven't read the last few books in that series. I haven't read ANY in the Lord John series.

I shall remedy both these abominable problems in future, yes I shall!

Ryan King said...

Nice! Sounds like you have busy schedule for sure. I've tried writing first thing. While most consider me a morning person, don't ask me to be creative first thing. My brain is a clean slate and nothing comes out. I'll just sit there and stare at the page.

S.P. Bowers said...

Well, definitely a lot less diapers and mopping then me! How fun, I love to see how others work, I always get great ideas.

Aven said...

Looks like I started a trend *g* Diana's books always throw my routine for a loop, too.

Neurotic Workaholic said...

I admire you for being able to write so early in the morning. I barely have the energy to arm-wrestle fellow commuters for a seat on the morning train.

Nadja Notariani said...

Love the schedule! I'll have to post what mine looks like. It's a fun idea for sure!

Good luck in collecting reviews from beta readers and final edits. You're getting closer everyday to your goal of publishing!

Carol Riggs said...

Interesting to see other writers' schedules! And that is so cool that the Campaigners have that book. We should do that all the time with the challenges! :)

Mohamed Mughal said...

What a full day; I'm tired just reading the schedule :)

Tony Storm said...

Omg Gabaldon, its been a while since i read something by her

Tracy Krauss said...

I see I'm not the only one falling into bed at night!

Lynda R Young said...

I'm super pleased to see the campaign challenges turned into an ebook.

Wendy Jane said...

Great check-in. You stay busy! But your busyness seems to be very productive. And I'm glad to know someone else is ruled by their cats. What would we ever do without them? Keep up the good work!

Madeleine said...

Great post. I enjoyed your writing day. I often blog in my PJ's and dressing gown, but tend to novel write once I'm showered & dressed. I write around chores and constantly feeding my cats all day. I often get inspired to write stuff of train journeys and if I'm out on a long walk.

Deniz Bevan said...

It's great to have that little extra time, Joshua.

Eee, Trisha and Tony, you're missing out! Hie thee to the library and get some more Gabaldon!

Argh, that's what happened to me this morning, Ryan and Neurotic. Couldn't even plot anything decent.

Thanks for the list idea, Sara, it was fun!

Didn't realise you'd started this, Aven - did you start it on the Forum or was it your blog post?

I'd love to see your schedules, Nadja and Carol!

I know, Mohamed, it's funny to see it all written out like that.

Falling into bed, definitely, Tracy. Some nights I can't even stay awake to read for fun :-(

Me too, Lynda, it's very exciting!

I've never been known to shoo away a cat that wants to cuddle up to me and the laptop, Wendy :-)

Love the idea of dressing up to write, Madeleine :-)

Brynne said...

Whew! What a week! Wish I could have lunch with you some time! I want to hear soOo many more things about you! Like what you dream of, what makes you laugh, what novel you wish you wrote...all those yummy questions that you could tell me over your knitting or over that delicious lunch we might one day have! Thanks for sharing of yourself, Deniz. As I said over on my own blog...you always give me smiles.

Outlander Kitchen said...

Thanks so much for your comment on Outlander Kitchen -- I'm glad to have found your blog! I consider myself a newish writer, so connecting with other writers is always a thrill...Theresa

Tia Bach said...

I was slow to the Gabaldon train, but am a huge fan now. I still need to catch up on the series. I've read the first four.

Love the schedule. ;-)

Deniz Bevan said...

Thank you so much Brynne! I'm picturing us at lunch right now... Hope you can make it up to Montreal some day!

Thanks for coming by Theresa! I love the idea for your blog.

Ooh, have fun with the rest of the books Tia. Don't know how you can hold out :-)

Books I'm Reading and Finished Books

  • New Europe by Michael Palin
  • ***Reading At Intervals***
  • Ox-Tales anthology
  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
  • Istanbul Noir (Akashic Books anthology)
  • A Woman in Arabia: The Writings of the Queen of the Desert by Gertrude Bell
  • 12 Anne and Avonlea books by L. M. Montgomery (skimming/reread (this was free on Kindle!))
  • Parade's End by Ford Madox Ford
  • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien manuscripts edited by J. D. Rateliff
  • Creed or Chaos? by Dorothy Sayers
  • Moby Dick by Herman Melville
  • The Jerusalem Bible
  • ***Finished Books***
  • Lyddie by Katherine Paterson
  • The Seven Dials Mystery by Agatha Christie (possibly a reread)
  • Husli the Dwarf
  • Winter Birds
  • Walkabout by James Vance Marshall (reread)
  • Wish I Might by Kait Nolan (novella)
  • A Walk in the Countryside A B C (National Trust and Nosy Crow Books)
  • My First Touch and Trace 1 2 3
  • Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Weep Not, Child by Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o
  • A Secret Vice by J. R. R. Tolkien (edited by Dimitra Fimi and Andrew Higgins)
  • A Pocket For Corduroy by Don Freeman
  • The Narrow Corner by Somerset Maugham
  • Cakes and Ale by Somerset Maugham
  • Le gout d'Istanbul (anthology) (skimmed)
  • Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy
  • Blue Nowruz by Monica Byrne (short story)
  • Sleeping Murder by Agatha Christie
  • secret beta read!
  • The Road Home by Rose Tremain
  • The Mewlips by J. R. R. Tolkien (poem; reread)
  • Just for This Moment by Kait Nolan
  • To Err is Human -- To Float, Divine by Woody Allen (short story)
  • the collected works of Beatrix Potter (Folio Society edition, over 30 books)
  • 11 Doctors 11 Stories by various authors (including Neil Gaiman) (only half read)
  • At Home by Bill Bryson
  • Millions of Cats by W Gag
  • Travels in the Scriptorium by Paul Auster
  • Discovering You by Brenda Novak
  • Notes from a Big Country by Bill Bryson
  • Report from the Interior by Paul Auster
  • Dream Days by Kenneth Grahame
  • Trigger Warning by Neil Gaiman
  • The Letters of J. R. R. Tolkien (reread)
  • They Do It With Mirrors by Agatha Christie
  • The Creatures of Number 37 by John Watts
  • The Inklings by Humphrey Carpenter (reread)
  • A Mother's Confession by Amanda Palmer (lyrics and liner notes)
  • Where Eagles Dare by Alistair MacLean
  • Guide to the Names in the Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien, in A Tolkien Compass
  • Dirge Without Music by Edna St. Vincent Millay (poem)
  • For my Wife, Navid by Monica Byrne (short story)
  • An Evening in Tavrobel by J. R. R. Tolkien (poem; reread)
  • The Lonely Isle by J. R. R. Tolkien (poem; reread)
  • Bilbo's Last Song by J. R. R. Tolkien (poem)
  • Ancrene Riwle, preface, by J. R. R. Tolkien
  • Adonais: An Elegy on the Death of John Keats by Percy Bysshe Shelley (poem)
  • Absence of Mind by Marilynne Robinson
  • The Peoples of Middle-earth - Book 12 in the History of Middle Earth series by Christopher Tolkien and J R R Tolkien (reread)
  • The Tale of Jemima Puddleduck by Beatrix Potter (reread)
  • The Tale of Mr Jeremy Fisher by Beatrix Potter (reread)
  • The Tale of Tom Kitten by Beatrix Potter (reread)
  • The Young Magicians edited by Lin Carter (anthology; includes two poems by J. R. R. Tolkien and all of rumble rumble rumble rumble drum belaboured by C. S. Lewis, referred to in The Last Battle)
  • Black and White Ogre Country by Hilary Tolkien
  • The Devil's Coach Horses by J. R. R. Tolkien (essay)
  • Guido's Gondola by Renee Riva and Steve Bjorkman
  • Save Our Public Universities by Marilynne Robinson (essay in Harper's Magazine)
  • Edmund Campion by Evelyn Waugh
  • Arthur and George by Julian Barnes
  • Career by Yevtushenko (poem)
  • Human life in this century by Yevtushenko (poem)
  • Willow by Anna Akhmatova (poem)
  • Sonnet LXVI by Shakespeare
  • Sir Walter Raleigh to His Son (poem)
  • Fair Jenny by Robbie Burns (poem)
  • MacPherson's Farewell by Robbie Burns (poem)
  • World's End, the collected Sandman No. 8 by Neil Gaiman
  • O Wert Thou In The Cauld Blast by Robbie Burns (poem)
  • The War of the Jewels - Book 11 in the History of Middle Earth series by Christopher Tolkien and J R R Tolkien (reread)
  • The Rolling English Road by G. K. Chesterton (poem)
  • The Noise of Time by Julian Barnes
  • A Tradition of Eighteen Hundred and Four by Thomas Hardy
  • The Hierophant by Lee-Ann Dalton (short story)
  • The Duchess of Bloomsbury Street by Helene Hanff
  • 84 Charing Cross Road by Helene Hanff (reread)
  • Lonely Planet guide to Switzerland
  • Hedda Gabler by Henrik Ibsen
  • beta read!
  • Ode on Venice by Lord Byron (poem)
  • Little Miss Scatterbrain by Roger Hargreaves (reread)
  • Little Miss Lucky by Roger Hargreaves (reread)
  • Little Miss Trouble by Roger Hargreaves (reread)
  • Homage to Switzerland by Ernest Hemingway (short story; reread but I really don't remember it after 20 years)
  • The Hockey Sweater by Roch Carrier (reread)
  • Sing a Long Children's Songs
  • Emily's First Christmas
  • Up At the Villa by Somerset Maugham (novella)
  • Telling Stories by Tim Burgess
  • The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
  • The Marble Collector by Cecilia Ahern
  • Sophie's Throughway by Jules Smith
  • Baby Animals (Little Golden Books)
  • The House That Jack Built (Little Golden Books)
  • Scuffy the Tugboat (Little Golden Books)
  • The Saggy Baggy Elephant (Little Golden Books)
  • Morgoth's Ring - Book 10 in the History of Middle Earth series by Christopher Tolkien and J R R Tolkien (reread)
  • A Child's Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson
  • Who's A Pest by Crosby Bonsall
  • Mine's the Best by Crosby Bonsall (reread)
  • The Case of the Hungry Stranger by Crosby Bonsall (reread)
  • extracts from the diary of John Evelyn (Volume 1 of 2)
  • extracts from Lord Byron's letters about Villa Diodati
  • Pippin the Christmas Pig by Jean Little
  • Ite Missa Est by Anthony Martignetti
  • The Last Battle by C. S. Lewis (reread)
  • The Silver Chair by C. S. Lewis (reread)
  • The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C. S. Lewis (reread)
  • Prince Caspian by C. S. Lewis (reread)
  • The Red Angel by G. K. Chesterton (essay)
  • Emily's Runaway Imagination by Beverly Cleary
  • The Boy Who Set Out to Learn What Fear Was by the Brothers Grimm
  • The Horse and His Boy by C. S. Lewis (reread)
  • The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis (reread)
  • secret beta read!
  • Preludes by Wordsworth (extracts read aloud)
  • Little Miss Scatterbrain by Roger Hargreaves
  • Dance Me A Dream by Kait Nolan (ARC)
  • Once Upon A Coffee by Kait Nolan
  • England and Switzerland, 1802 by William Wordsworth (poem)
  • Once Upon A New Year's Eve by Kait Nolan
  • short story by Becky Morgan (http://forums.compuserve.com/discussions/Books_and_Writers_Community/Writers_Exercises/Becky_Morgans_December_X/ws-books/85291.1?nav=messages)
  • Blood In Blood Out by Brenda Novak (short story)
  • That Hell-Bound Train by Robert Bloch (short story)
  • Distraction by J. L. Campbell
  • Humble Bundle Peanuts collection (strips by Charles Schulz)
  • Peanuts Volumes I to VI (bought via Humble Bundle; very disappointing as it's mostly new strips -- how is that even allowed?!)
  • Sandals and Sangria by Talli Roland (short story)
  • Over the Hump by Talli Roland (short story)
  • issues of Journal of Inklings Studies and Amon Hen and Mallorn (Tolkien Society)
  • Z is for Zamboni: A Hockey Alphabet by Matt Napier
  • Babar and his Family by Laurent de Brunhoff
  • Illusions Lost by Byron A. Maddox (short story)
  • ongoing rereads of most board books listed last year!
  • Lost My Name book for Emily (https://www.lostmy.name/)
  • Now We Are Six by A. A. Milne
  • When We Were Very Young by A. A. Milne (reread)
  • Neil Gaiman comics on Sequential app
  • Moranology by Caitlin Moran
  • see the 2015 list and statistics at http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.ch/2015/12/annual-books-read-statistics.html
  • see the 2014 list and statistics at http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.ch/2014/12/books-read-in-2014-review.html
  • see the 2013 list and statistics at http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.ca/2014/01/toast-to-professor-books-read-in-2013.html
  • see the 2012 list and statistics here http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.ca/2012/12/the-hobbit-review-and-year-end-books.html
  • see the 2011 statistics on http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.ca/2012/01/books-read-in-2011-statistics-fourth.html
  • see the 2011 list at http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.ca/2012/01/books-read-in-2011.html
  • see the 2010 list at http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.com/2010/12/books-read-in-2010-listed-here.html
  • see the 2009 list at http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.com/2009/12/books-read-in-2009-part-ii.html
  • also in 2009 at http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.com/2009/12/books-read-in-2009-part-iv.html
  • see the 2008 list at http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.com/2008/12/books-read-in-2008-part-ii.html
  • also in 2008 at http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.com/2008/12/books-read-in-2008-part-vi.html
  • also in 2008 at http://thegirdleofmelian.blogspot.com/2008/12/books-read-in-2008-part-iv.html